On the Bleeding Edge of Innovation

A little fish plasma, some business savvy, and a generous amount of scientific know-how provided the winning combination for a pair of Penn students who took home top honors—and the $20,000 that accompanied it—in this year’s Wharton Business Plan Competition Venture Finals.

Team FibrinX Inc. landed the grand prize for its innovative use of Atlantic salmon blood-plasma to seal off serious wounds and prevent excessive bleeding. Engineering Ph.D. candidate Dhaval Gosalia and second-year MBA student Jonathan Goodspeed created a sealant that is less expensive than other mammal-based ones, and also less susceptible to viruses.

A second place prize of $10,000 went to team IntuiTouch for a handheld, portable at-home breast-cancer detection device, and team Dynamic BioSystems won the $5,000 third prize for an innovation in fast, scarless wound-healing that needs no special storage. In all, students received over $75,000 in cash and prizes.

Goodspeed and Gosalia have already obtained six patents as well as funding for pre-clinical trials from the U.S. Army and Navy. In addition to the battlefield, the duo’s sealant may be used in hospitals and dental offices.

They wouldn’t be the first winners of the Wharton contest to go corporate [“Nurturing Enterprise,” September/October 2003]. Previous competitions have resulted in several thriving enterprises, including PayMyBills.com, BuySafe, PAWS Pet Insurance, and MicroMRI. Molly Petrilla C’06

©2005 The Pennsylvania Gazette
Last modified 07/01/05

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